Question / Help Lag/Stutter on output using QuickSync

mauriciognr

New Member
Hello, ive been using OBS for a while now, just to record since i dont stream. I didnt have a graphics card, so ive always used x264 since my iGPU was running the games. However i now have a graphics card and according to everyone in the web QuickSync is some sort of magical thing that lets you record your gameplay without that much of a performance, much like the nvidia NVENC (not supported by my card).

So i went to my BIOS an enabled back my iGPU (Intel HD 4000) after installing the graphics card (GTX 260). I left the shared memory on auto. Went to OBS and selected QuickSync and tried to record, however im getting lag and stutter on the output video altough the gameplay is smooth.

Ive tried using the same CBR that i was using for x264 on 1080p wich was 7000 kbps. The result was a super low quality video. I learned later that i neede a high bitrate if i wanted to use QSV. Fine.

Then tried what some guys said on the web and right here on the forums about using CQP with a value of around 23. I got better quality but a huge file, however the lag and freezes in the output video are still there (the game runs fine).

Log: https://obsproject.com/logs/Jk0GqU1UaxOKtmqK

My PC
CPU: Core i5-3475S (Intel HD 4000)
RAM : 8 GB DDR3 @ 1600 Mhz
GPU: Geforce GTX 260 (1 GB GDDR3) - old af i know
Windows 10 Pro x64
2 HDDs (One with the system and games and the other one as OBS output folder).
 
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mauriciognr

New Member
I went out and read A LOT more threads in the forums, and tried several things, like disabing windows game bar and game mode. However I was not able to solve the problem.

Now for testing purposes i changed my graphics card to a GT210 since is the same family as my GTX 260 and the only other card in hand. Also plugged a second monitor to the VGA output of my motherboard (iGPU output) where i am displaying OBS Studio while i am recording, preview is disabled while i record of course. Any of hat made a difference.

The only other thing i use besidesd OBS is an In-game Overlay from MSI Afterburner and RTSS (CPU usage, Gpu usage, memory usage, temos, things like that). I noticed that when i change the source weird things happens to the FPS counter OBS has in the lower right corner. The sources i use are (one or the other, never both at the same time):

- Display Capture: FPS stay on 60 until i pres record, then they go down well below the game FPS.
- Window Capture: FPS on OBS dont stay on 60 and pretty much never match the game FPS, most of the time ias is way less than the game FPS.

Both cases the output video stutters and lags.

PD: Game capture pretty much never works so i dont use it.

Log: https://obsproject.com/logs/NaWhEcjqIBE8SPxf
 
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Narcogen

Active Member
Hardware encoding generally will give lower quality results than x264 at the same bitrate and frame size.

To get similar quality using hardware encoding as x264, you need to deal with larger files.

QuickSync isn't a magic bullet to avoid dropping frames or deliver amazing quality; it's to take the encoding load off the CPU on machines that have the necessary hardware.
 

mauriciognr

New Member
Hardware encoding generally will give lower quality results than x264 at the same bitrate and frame size.

To get similar quality using hardware encoding as x264, you need to deal with larger files.

QuickSync isn't a magic bullet to avoid dropping frames or deliver amazing quality; it's to take the encoding load off the CPU on machines that have the necessary hardware.
I am aware of all that. Did you read all i said? Putting aside the quality thing (changed the title) which is not that important at the moment. I cant record anything usable since the output video is mostly lag due to missing frames or so it says the OBS log. Isnt the iGPU (Intel 4000) supposed to handle the encoding of the video? Then whats the big deal If both tested cards (GT210 and GTX260) can run X game fine and the i5 is only about 30%? Why the lag and stutter in the output video? I mean, is not like if I were trying 4K at 60 FPS with idk a bitrate of 1000000 kbps for God sake.
 

koala

Active Member
I once had a 3rd generation Intel i5 as well, i. e. the same Quicksync encoder as you, and I was able to create perfect recordings with Quicksync (at the time "perfect" for me was 1920x1080@30fps). The GPU was a Nvidia GTX 670. So I assume it is not Quicksync that is your issue, but it may be your not very powerful GPU (a GTX 270 has the fifth to tenth about the power of current GPUs). A GT 210 is less powerful than even your iGPU, so don't use it at all.
If the balance between game and recording isn't right, check your Windows settings. Disable Windows Game mode.
 

mauriciognr

New Member
I once had a 3rd generation Intel i5 as well, i. e. the same Quicksync encoder as you, and I was able to create perfect recordings with Quicksync (at the time "perfect" for me was 1920x1080@30fps). The GPU was a Nvidia GTX 670. So I assume it is not Quicksync that is your issue, but it may be your not very powerful GPU (a GTX 270 has the fifth to tenth about the power of current GPUs). A GT 210 is less powerful than even your iGPU, so don't use it at all.
If the balance between game and recording isn't right, check your Windows settings. Disable Windows Game mode.
Yeah i know where the both cards stand performance wise, thats the whole idea of the gameplays, to see how the aged. And because of that im using resolutions like 800x600 with the GT210 and 720p or 900p with the GTX260.

After a lot of reading a my own testing i wan to point out some things:

- Using the Afterburner overlay i managed to monitor the Intel HD 4000 GPU and memory usage. At 800x600 is around 15%, and at 900p around 40% while using about 100 MB.
- The OBS FPS counter stays on 60 FPS as long as the main GPU (the Nvidia one) dont go above 90-95% of usage.
- The OBS FPS seems to get hit if you want to show the preview. Disabling the preview can help keeping the FPS stable at 60 or at least get more FPS than with the preview ON.
- As long as the OBS FPS stay on 60 or in worst case scenario at least above the in-game FPS the output video will be "smooth" meaning it wont lag more than the game itself.
- Vsync helps to limit the in-game FPS which depending on the game might help keeping the GPU usage from reaching 90% and above.
- A similar solution to Vsync is to use an external FPS cap.
- Another apporach is to set OBS to 30 FPS and aslong as the game stays above 30 FPS you wont notice any lag in the output video.
- And of course a combo of Vsync/FPS Cap, lowering the resolution and/or detail of the game, and disabling the OBS Preview once everything is set to record will in most cases free up some GPU power to be used by OBS. In my testing about 85-95% of GPU usage in game is ok for OBS and QuickSync to record without lag.

Thats how im managing to record right now at "smooth" (above in game FPS which gives a video that doesnt lag more than the games does haha), ive only used the GT210 atm, when i switch to the GTX 260 ill check all that again to see if anything changes and report back.
 

koala

Active Member
Again: disable Windows Game Mode. Game Mode is a very aggressive mechanism within Windows 10 to dedicate every machine resource to a running game and withdraw them from every other app, such as OBS.
 
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